Wells Fargo & Company MN increased its stake in shares of AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) by 13.1% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 217,710 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 25,196 shares during the quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN owned about 0.22% of AutoNation worth $9,178,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other large investors also recently modified their holdings of the stock. CIBC World Markets Inc. acquired a new stake in AutoNation during the second quarter worth approximately $278,000. Commonwealth Bank of Australia grew its position in AutoNation by 40.4% during the second quarter. Commonwealth Bank of Australia now owns 34,034 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,434,000 after buying an additional 9,800 shares in the last quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC grew its position in AutoNation by 4.7% during the second quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC now owns 153,996 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,493,000 after buying an additional 6,964 shares in the last quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS grew its position in AutoNation by 0.5% during the second quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 4,890 shares of the company’s stock worth $206,000 after buying an additional 24 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State of Tennessee Treasury Department grew its position in AutoNation by 0.5% during the second quarter. State of Tennessee Treasury Department now owns 18,002 shares of the company’s stock worth $759,000 after buying an additional 84 shares in the last quarter. 73.42% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

A number of equities research analysts recently issued reports on the company. Northcoast Research downgraded AutoNation from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Wednesday. BidaskClub raised AutoNation from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, August 14th. Berenberg Bank assumed coverage on AutoNation in a research report on Wednesday. They set a “buy” rating and a $55.00 price target on the stock. Buckingham Research reduced their price target on AutoNation from $44.00 to $35.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, August 3rd. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG reissued a “hold” rating and set a $43.00 price target (down previously from $46.00) on shares of AutoNation in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. AutoNation presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $45.55.

Shares of AutoNation, Inc. (AN) opened at 47.56 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $4.78 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.84 and a beta of 1.21. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $45.40 and a 200-day moving average price of $42.22. AutoNation, Inc. has a one year low of $38.20 and a one year high of $53.74.

AutoNation (NYSE:AN) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, August 2nd. The company reported $0.86 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.98 by ($0.12). AutoNation had a return on equity of 16.71% and a net margin of 1.90%. The company had revenue of $5.28 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.56 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.08 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 3.0% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts forecast that AutoNation, Inc. will post $3.58 earnings per share for the current year.

AutoNation declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock repurchase program on Tuesday, August 29th that authorizes the company to repurchase $250.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to purchase up to 6% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are typically a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

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In related news, Director Robert R. Grusky sold 2,800 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.99, for a total value of $109,172.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 30,713 shares in the company, valued at $1,197,499.87. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 3.10% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

AutoNation Profile

AutoNation, Inc (AutoNation) is an automotive retailer in the United States. The Company offers a range of automotive products and services, including new vehicles, used vehicles, parts and service, which includes automotive repair and maintenance services, as well as wholesale parts and collision businesses, and automotive finance and insurance products, including vehicle service and other protection products, as well as the arranging of financing for vehicle purchases through third-party finance sources.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for AutoNation (NYSE:AN)

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